Children are born special. Every child has distinctive characteristics, virtues, strengths and abilities that contribute to form their unique personality. This uniqueness forms the basis of how and why children react and respond differently to a given situation. It is what makes every child ‘special’. Even studies based on twins have identified contrasting differences in traits, temperaments and maturity levels amongst sets of identical twins. Thus no two children are alike.
It is important to note that although there are common needs and characteristics of children of an age cohort, the underlying personality traits of each child is different. Children learn, grow and mature at distinct rates. Acknowledging and respecting this uniqueness by parents and teachers will allow understanding of the kind of support and help each child needs in their developmental pathway. Adults who are aware of this early on usually encourage their children be who they are. Such children are often more confident as they are allowed to express their individuality in a social setting without fear of punishment for being different or expressing themselves differently. When we recognize and celebrate a child’s speciality, it helps them stand out in a crowd. Understanding the speciality of children will help parents better guide them towards their long-term goals of becoming successful adults who are able to achieve their full potential.
The following are the benefits of treating every child as a unique individual:
· Allows quicker recognition of the child’s strengths to promote excellence as well as its weaknesses to provide opportunities of improvement, thus enabling a holistic development
· Helps the child become self-aware, define his or her individuality and take responsibility for his or her action
· Helps developing their personalities, talents and abilities
Many social institutions like play schools and educational institutes tend to teach, groom, support and interact with all children alike. This often results in hampering a child’s uniqueness. Current school teaching methodologies aren’t equipped to address this on account of several inherent problems. Every student needs a curriculum that caters to their unique profile, strengths and weaknesses that aids in stimulating and providing comprehensive development. Research has shown that both language and learning get nurtured in an environment that is attentive and supportive to each learner’s developmental needs.
By celebrating each child as unique individuals we assist in designing an environment that is encouraging, nurturing and will positively influence all areas of a child’s development: the physical, social, emotional, and cognitive.
As Robert John Meehan rightly stated, “Every child has a different learning style and pace. Each child is unique, not only capable of learning but also capable of succeeding”.